Gabrielle Union has come a long way in her time in front of the camera, both in the tabloids and professionally. Her career began in the 90s and she definitely has a lot of impressive credentials to her name. Most will remember her from She’s All That, The Brothers, Bad Boys 2 and 10 Things I Hate About You. She got her start on TV and is now an author and activist.
Dwyane Wade is a professional basketball player in the NBA who currently plays for the Miami Heat. He has also played with the Chicago Bulls and the Cleveland Cavaliers. His NBA career can most definitely be considered a strong one as he is a consistent leader in points, steals, assists and games. The two got together in 2009 and even though the road was quite bumpy, they have stayed together since and are a happily married couple, despite all the drama that has followed them around. Sometimes this was Wade's fault, other times it was Union's.
But what more than their careers, these two have been subject to years and years of tabloid attention and stories have surfaced about their pasts and their current private lives, as such is the case with many Hollywood celebrities.
Read on and see exactly what you missed in their lives together and witness firsthand exactly what they’ve overcome.
15 Gabrielle Is A Lot Older Than Dwyane
Wade was born on January 17th, 1982, making him 36 years old. Union was born on October 29th, 1972, making her 45. That means she’s almost ten years older than the star basketball player. We guess that Dwyane likes his significant others to be a little older than him, and hey, to each his own. There’s no doubt she’s gorgeous and she probably brings a lot of maturity to the table as she has lived a whole decade longer than he has!
It’s definitely a different dynamic from what the public is used to seeing. Celebrity men tend to date and marry younger women, but that isn’t the case here. Regardless, they seem happy and the age difference seems to work in their favour.
14 He Was Previously Married
Before Union, Wade was married. He married Siohvaughn Funches, who was actually the basketball star’s high school sweetheart, believe it or not. They were together from 2002 until 2007 when they filed for divorce. The divorce proceedings weren’t pretty, as you’ll soon read on. His first two sons were with Funches: Zaire Blessing Dwyane and Zion Malachi Airamis.
She has written a tell-all book about her time with Wade and she definitely paints a horrible picture full of abuse, affairs on his part and a drastic change of character on her part. She claims she became a money-loving diva and her character changed for the worse in order to fit in with the wives club of the NBA. The book is called The True Story For God’s Glory.
13 On A Tight Schedule
Not many couples go public about their private lives. Amongst normal citizens, it kind of falls in the category of TMI--way too much information. So, most couples keep the details of their private time lives where it belongs: between themselves. But unfortunately, that isn’t the case with most celebrities these days, with their intimate lives coming up more often than reports about what actually made them famous in the first place.
Such is the case with our particular couple in question, as reports made by Union to the press have suggested that they schedule their “private time” for when Wade is not playing basketball. Now is it just us, or doesn’t that fall considerably into the aforementioned category? Big time! For Pete's sake, keep it to yourselves!
12 Milli Vanilli
So many Hollywood/Sports couples have little time for anything else outside of their careers. It shows in the plethora of celebrity couples the tabloids feature every single week. That’s why it’s so refreshing to see a couple like Union and Wade tweeting and posting on social media so often and to welcoming fans. Fans and followers of the two are often subject to nice moments the couple share and for fans that are into that sort of thing, it’s actually quite nice.
And keeping with that theme, fans enjoyed moments like the one above where for Halloween, the couple dressed up as the controversial singing duet from the 90s, Milli Vanilli. Video of the photographed moment showed them actually dancing like the duet and is actually quite hilarious.
11 He And She Raise His Nephew
Dwyane’s got a sister. Her name is Deanna, and it’s true, he and Gabrielle raise Deanna’s son, Dahveon. The youngster was already twelve when the Wade’s officially adopted him and reports state that he didn’t have it easy up until that point. A source claims that he doesn’t even have a father listed on his birth certificate.
The courts stated that Dahveon would still have his mother Deanna listed legally as a parent, only he would now be raised by his uncle and aunt as far as the courts were concerned. This is definitely great news for the child, seeing that he can now benefit fully from his uncle’s success and financial portfolio. Seeing that his time up until he was twelve was indeed troubled, this is fitting.
10 They Broke Up Before Getting Married
Dwyane and Gabrielle started dating in 2009, even before his divorce with his wife was finalized. At first things were indeed wonderful and love was in the air, as the old saying goes. But unfortunately, according to sources, the two had trouble finding time to be together.
With his NBA career and her film and public appearance schedule, there just wasn’t any time to cultivate their relationship. This is understandable, as it’s common knowledge that any relationship needs to be nurtured, and the only thing that can properly nurture a relationship is time. So it was in 2013 that the two called off their courtship and while their time off seemed a good idea at the time, Dwyane got up to some mischief while Gabrielle was away, as you’ll soon read.
9 Great Mother Figure
Sources close to the couple all say the same thing, and that’s the fact that she is absolutely great with those kids. Not everybody is fit to be a parent, that is a vast understatement, but being a step-parent can at times be even harder.
Gabrielle Union plays the part of step-parent not only thrice, but four times over and that is no easy feat. Yet all that can be heard by sources close to her and around her inner circle is that she is always there for those boys. She makes herself available to them no matter what they need and no matter what’s on her own schedule, and that is very commendable. Sources say that she’s also loads of fun, as a lot of these pictures show.
8 Got Busy While They Were Apart
They were only broken up for a few months in 2013, but the time apart was enough for Wade to get himself in a tad of trouble. It has been reported that he and his long-time “friend,” Aja Metoyer, conceived a son, Xavier Zechariah.
He worked pretty quickly, some might say. But what makes the whole thing even more of a controversy is the fact that some sources have claimed that Aja wasn’t a friend at all, but merely a groupie that attended one of his games. According to sources close to the couple, Union was furious, but what’s indeed shocking is the fact that in December of the same year, 2013, she had taken Wade back and the two announced their engagement soon after.
7 Marrying Into A Big Family
Dwyane Wade’s family was already large before he and Union met, but by no means did he expect that it would get this big when he married Union. Gabrielle Union is actually part of the largest African-American family in the state of Nebraska—true and recorded fact! Every year they have a family reunion, and they recently celebrated their 97th family reunion or roundabouts.
Union, Dwyane and the kids attend every year and they mingle with Union’s relatives from all across the US, who come together for the event. It’s actually really great and a great way to teach their children about heritage and the importance of family togetherness—something that can easily be lost in today’s world. Union has two siblings … both sisters.
6 She Was Previously Married As Well
Wade wasn’t the only one to have previously been in a meaningful relationship. From 2001 to 2006, Union was married to Chris Howard, a football player with the NFL. He played with the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Denver Broncos and he is now retired.
Union claims that her marriage with the ex-football player was doomed from the get-go. She claims that he proposed while eating a KFC potato wedge in his other hand. Apparently the gesture wasn’t romantic enough for the actress, and it has been rumoured that her father had to give her a pep talk before her first marriage - actually on the wedding day itself. Not very good signs at all, but she went through with it regardless and she now deeply regrets her marriage to Howard.
There are many who wouldn’t understand this, as it can seem a bit of a paradox. But Dwyane Wade respects his wife. Now these may seem and be considered incredulous statements to some, but people close to the couple can confirm that the statements are indeed factual. Considering his alleged mistreatment of his ex-wife and the scandalous rumours of his bad boy ways while he and Union were apart, we can definitely understand why this may seem a tad unbelievable to most.
But regardless of what has transpired in their tumultuous lives, he has reached a level of contrition that most in his predicament will never see. And what more, she has forgiven him his transgressions. He has gone on record that his wife is the strongest woman he knows considering what she’s had to deal with.
4 She Has A Name
Dwyane and Gabrielle recently donated 200 000 dollars to March for Our Lives, an organization fighting for student gun control, only at first, many were led to believe that only Dwyane had contributed by the way a particular headline had reported the extravagant donation. WSVN-7 reported the story and the headline read: “Dwyane Wade and Wife Donate". Not a smart move.
As it turned out, fans assaulted the TV station with tweets an messages claiming that Union deserved to be mentioned by name in the headline. A little while later, Union concurred, to the fact that it would have been nice to have been mentioned as well as her husband. Well, the TV station apologized publicly and their apology was accepted via Twitter by Wade himself.
3 She Has Yet To Be A Mom
Of course many would consider her a mother already and sources claim, she’s a good one at that, but she has yet to have any children of her own. She has had a whopping nine miscarriages with Wade and has undergone IVF treatment, but sadly to no avail.
What makes this terribly sad to anyone that knows her is that she’s apparently really good with Wade’s children and nephew and sources close to the couple state that she makes an excellent mother to those boys and would make an excellent mom to any child graced to her. Miscarriages are horrible and any couple that has gone through it knows the terrible pain it can bring. Her fans hope that she can one day conceive and we at The Sportster concur wholeheartedly.
2 He Went Through a Lengthy Custody Battle For His Kids
Divorce is bad enough. Divorce when kids are involved is a whole heck of lot worse. Such was the case for Wade and his first wife and although he divorce proceedings were long and arduous enough, the misery was lengthened by custody battles for the couple’s two children.
After the lengthy court battle, Wade was granted custody of the two children by the judge. This is rare, but sufficient evidence was found for the court to believe that he would indeed make a good full time father and guardian, seemingly moreover his ex-wife. Rumours have circulated about his own bad behaviour off the courts and behind closed doors, but apparently none of this was covered in the custody fight. His ex sure has a lot to say about it, as she wasn’t silent about her objections during the battle and even now.
1 A United Front
For any couple who have gone through what they have gone and still go through, the fact that they’re still together and thriving is definitely a great thing. Fans of the two and supporters of their unity have gone on record to say that the couple is indeed an inspiration to them as they have surmounted many odds and obstacles.
We’d have to agree in that they have indeed faced a load of dilemmas that not many couples have to. From adultery, to miscarriages, to bad press, the stress can mount in such situations and cause most to crumble beneath the weight of it all. What’s commendable with these two is that they have come out through it all, as they seem to still be happy with one another and very much in love.